Subscribe to the Blog with or | Post Updated: October 18th, 2017 | 1st Posted: October 18, 2017
Posted by: Graham Smith in Categories: Brand Identity, Tips & Advice
When a Non Paying Logo Design Client Refuses to Pay the Final Balance it's always a real upset, and can cause untold hardships, both practically and emotionally.
I've experienced more than my fair share of clients who have, for whatever reason, decided to not pay the final due balance, on completion of a supposedly successful logo design project.
Few Words on my Budget Breakdowns
I tend to ask for a 50% - 75% deposit, then the remaining balance due when the client has signed-off on the logo design.
If it's a big value branding project, say something upwards of £3000, then I usually factor in a Progress Payment.
This is to help 'reduce' the initial Deposit for the client, as well as bringing in a bit of peace of mind for them. This will be paid only when the client is happy with the overall direction of the logo or branding direction, but not necessarily the actual final design.
How this is broken down ultimately depends on the actual budget, and also negotiations with the client, but for example: Deposit = 60%, Progress Payment = 25% and Final Balance = 15%
Only when the client has settled the final balance will I then send over the digital files, and initiate the 'official' Transfer of Copyright (that there's a template that I created for you).
Some Reasons a Client Might Not Pay Final Balance
On occasion, a client might just disappear and cease all communications even though the work has been completed.
Sometimes they fob you off with a few emails, and promises of payment, but ultimately you never hear from them again.
There are many reasons why a client might just 'vanish' after the logo design has been finalised, a few I can think of:
- they've simply done a runner and plan to use the logo without paying; their company, product, start-up (this has happened far too often for me, and I'm VERY wary of taking on big budget start-up's for this very reason, without a hefty deposit or even full payment up front), venture etc has fallen through and don't feel they need the logo anymore;
- some major personal trauma has occurred putting the logo right down on the list of priorities;
- they've found another designer to finish of the work you started;
- they've left it to the last possible minute to tell you they now don't like what you'd designed for them;
- and a few more I can't think of right now.
My Main Tactic to Get Closure for Your Non Paying Logo Design Client
This doesn't always work, as it obviously depends on why the client has 'stopped communication.
Firstly: I'll be patient, and send a few emails a week, simply asking for an update and a nudge to get in contact.
Obviously ask them if everything is OK, are there any problems I can help with etc.
If this patient approach doesn't yield any results, then I'll jump straight to my '3rd Strike and you're out' approach.
The gist is this: I'll write an email that basically says that since I've not received the final balance, and that the contract states that only once the full balance is paid will the logo design & copyright be owned by the client, I'll now be putting the logo up for sale, and/or will use the logo for another client.
I also stress this salient fact: from time-to-time I'll be dropping in on their website/business to ensure they're not using the logo without my permission. I like this threatened course of action quite a lot…
That if I do see the logo in use, the one they've not fully paid for, that I'll initiate strategies to make their life somewhat challenging; naming and shaming on social media is one way that can scare a client into paying what is due, but this is literally the last course of action, and hopefully could be prevented.
It's really quite simple, but a few times it has actually spurred the client into action; realising this logo they thought they could use, and that they thought was unique to them, is actually now not so unique, and could well be used by sometime else.
Pretty Hit & Miss
Obviously the above doesn't always work, especially if the Non Paying Logo Design Client doesn't care if someone else is using it, but the hight the budget and initial deposit type projects usually means they begin to realise that not paying the final balance isn't worth it.
It's far from being guaranteed solution, as there are so many variables that would affect the outcome, but it makes me feel better putting this tactic to use.
Subscribe to the Blog with or | Post Updated: June 27th, 2017 | 1st Posted: June 27, 2017
Posted by: Graham Smith in Categories: Brand Identity
The Logo Smith gets in on the Google My Business Website, and Google Posts, merry-go round; more social clutter, and SEO noise, to deal with.
Google My Business Website
I only discovered the Google My Business Website by chance, as I was uploading some photos via the My Business iPhone app, so I could knock out a few Google Posts, which is another new'ish My Business update).
Can't keep up with all this social media and SEO stuff, really can't. But have too… snooze you lose and all that.
It's not all that bad really, as the website is super-quick to set-up. Only a handful of templates to choose from, bit of copy, and BOOM.
No real way to style the business site to a particular brand style, other than the header image, so that really cuts the time spent messing around with this. You can't really do buggar all with it style wise, and I guess, that's a good thing.
The Business Site ties in nicely with the rest of your My Business services; shows the most recent of your Google My Business photo uploads (which I try to update daily, along with your local business search map.)
The other recent update to My Business is Google Posts, and this ties in nicely with your Knowledge Panel in search results.
Google Posts are actually quite fun to do, it's more like a micro-blogging service, with a 7-day post expiry limit.
It's good for posting time sensitive updates about your brand, business, services etc. You get up to 300 words, and also one squared up photograph, to make your point.
All Google Posts will show up to 10 posts simultaneously, via a carousel type display, which the user can scroll through to see those not showing in the panel.
I try to post a Google Post on a daily basis (see examples above), along with uploading recent images to do with my freelance logo design business.
Ultimately, if all this helps prospective clients find me, or stumble over me, enough to want to hire me for their logo design, then I'll do whatever needs to be done.
To Wrap Up
Honestly, I'm not really into writing about Google and SEO stuff, but felt this was interesting enough to mention.
Important enough to link out to this excellent blog, Google My Business & Local Search, by Mike Blumenthal.
You'll get all the info you need about Google Posts, and My Business Website, plus other local search news.
Subscribe to the Blog with or | Post Updated: June 24th, 2017 | 1st Posted: June 24, 2017
Posted by: Graham Smith in Categories: Brand Identity
Hiring a Logo Designer: Time for some direct approach marketing, and advertising, due to some unexpected availability over the next few weeks.
As a Freelance Logo Designer I offer the following creative & technical services: Logo Design; Logo Designs for Sale; Application Icons; Brand Identities & Corporate Guidelines; Consultation; Custom Lettering; Secure WordPress Installs, Theme Customisation & Hosting.
Hiring a Logo Designer with 25 Years Experience
I'm very proud to be able to say I have a whopping 25 years of industry experience in: graphic & illustrative design, logo design services; brand identity design, typography, typesetting, commercial print, reprographics, photography, marketing & advertising.
If you’re looking to hire a Freelance Logo Designer, then one really need look no further than The Logo Smith, and on that note, here are some useful links to get you started:
Hope to hear from you soon,
Subscribe to the Blog with or | Post Updated: January 22nd, 2017 | 1st Posted: January 19, 2017
Posted by: Graham Smith in Categories: Brand Identity, Designer Spotlight, Famous Logos
How about: the Nike logo on a Coca-Cola can; Tomato Ketchup as an aerosol to spray on your dinner; drinking some Pepsi from a car oil container; cleaning your windows with some Starbucks coffee spray…
The Shell logo on a milk carton is a bit icky tho…
Lovely little brand logo project, and I particularly love the style of illustration, rather than trying to go for photo realistic renders.
Brand Logo Mix Designed by Atomike Studios
Mike Stefanini: "Almost inadvertently I had approached the design of a Coca-Cola can of the Nike logo... I found it nicely subversive, so I decided to apply this principle to other consumer products..."
Atomike Studio on Instagram
Incidentally, Mike has a wonderfully colourful Instagram account, that is definitely work following:
Linked to Quipsologies & Brand New
Subscribe to the Blog with or | Post Updated: September 14th, 2016 | 1st Posted: August 15, 2016
Posted by: Graham Smith in Categories: Brand Identity, Logo Portfolio, Work in Process
Work-in-Process: WordPress Theme Developer Logo Design
'codetipi' is a logo design project currently in progress for a popular WordPress Theme and Website Developer.
In this post are just a few snapshots of the later stages of the project, showing the most recent logo design concept (above), and a few of the ones that didn't quite turn out as expected.
As a freelance logo designer, the number of logo ideas and concepts that end up either off-the-mark, or simply no-good, can vary from project-to-project.
However, I like to feel there is rarely a wasted moment on a project as some of the unused logo ideas can either be repurposed for another client, or in my case, sold as mentioned in this post: Custom Logo Designs for Sale, and currently shown on the Logo Designs for Sale page.
This logo design can also be viewed on Dribble: https://dribbble.com/shots/2897615-Codetipi-Logo-Design
Some of the not-so-on-the-mark logo design concepts and ideas:
Codetipi creates unique WordPress themes and plugins (and possibly more code-related products in the future) that push the standards and strive to not only feel/look nice, but work just as well.
The products are clean, modern, extremely user-friendly and users genuinely love them. No bloat and no fluff, my products just work.
Subscribe to the Blog with or | Post Updated: September 14th, 2016 | 1st Posted: April 22, 2016
Posted by: Graham Smith in Categories: Brand Identity, Portfolio, Work in Process
GPS Fleet Tracking and Management Logo Design: Work in Process
As a freelance logo designer in the UK (hire me), I do get to work on some pretty varied logo projects. I was recently hired by: Global Positioning Specialists - Fleet Tracking and Management, a play on GPS: Global Positioning Satellite to create a new logo and brand identity for them.
Initially I was trying too find a way to incorporate the 3 initials GPS, so instead looked at creating a standalone logo mark, based off maybe just one of the initials.
It occurred to me that the ‘G” was probably the best bet as it lends itself nicely to a few relevant connections to GPS, but when created in the way I have designed it, becomes even more connected to fleet management and tracking.
This G took some time to evolve, trying many styles, many ways to construct it etc. Ultimately I landed on the idea of a ‘x’ marks the spot, or pin point of something, even target cross-hairs in a way.
The arrangement then was the trickiest, and i wanted to try and portray the idea of GPS signals being bounced from satellite to ground, and back up, ending in a sort of arrow pointing up and to the right as well as into the wording itself.
So this creates a sort of graphical representation of data and tracking signals, but also the ‘x’ can represent the individual vehicles and such like.
Image above shows various thicknesses and spacing for the logo mark.
The G is circular of sorts, so this also just helps with the connection to earth/orbit/data travel with the arrow also indicating movement of the fleet.
It’s not your usual GPS style of logo, and this is exactly what I was trying to achieve, to create something a step up from the ordinary, still using some literally connections and interpretations, but in a cleaner and relevant way.
The logo, when placed near the top of a letterhead, brochure, leaflet, advert, etc, can then also be bled/extended off the top, such as the image below shows. This helps reinforce the idea of signals coming down from the satellites.
The logo mark itself is also ‘square’ in shape, so will fit perfectly fit in social media profile images etc. May need to work on creating a more simplified version of this, so less x’s for smaller sizes for example.
Ultimately, the logo mark captures the meaning of GPS: Global Positioning Specialists - Fleet Tracking and Management, through various connections and meanings in a stylised graphical way, that isn’t cheesy, cliche or ordinary.
In that regards I think it ‘should’ be pretty unique in terms of how the logo mark has been designed, but more importantly how relevant the various bits are that make the symbol.
Looking for a Freelance Logo Designer for your own Logo Design Project?
If you are a real estate agent looking for a freelance logo designer for a new logo design for a new business, or are looking to update/refresh your current business brand logo, then I'd love to hear from you.
Alternatively, if you know what you are looking for, then you can take a look at my Logo Design Brief, and maybe fill that in so we can get started.
Please call/text me on: 07816 527462, or email: email@example.com for more information on how I can help you with your graphic design, and logo design requirements.
Subscribe to the Blog with or | Post Updated: May 25th, 2017 | 1st Posted: February 26, 2016
Posted by: Graham Smith in Categories: Brand Identity, Logo Portfolio, Portfolio
My Pure Storage (flash-storage) Logo on an LCD Sign at JFK Airport
Pure Storage, a flash-storage company, has to be one of my proudest logo and brand identity design accomplishments.
Having designed the Pure Storage logo back in 2010 for the then unknown flash-storage company, which was also stealth mode start-up at the time, Pure Storage has quickly become a major player in the industry, and ranked third in the flash-storage market behind EMC and IBM.
TechInsider: According to its S-1, Pure Storage made about $174 million in revenue last year, roughly a 4X jump from the previous year. It has already made $159 million in the first half of this year, putting it on pace to hit nearly $300 million this year.
— Colin Willems (@colinwillems) February 13, 2016
Watching my little baby growing-up over the years has been pretty amazing; to see how and where the Pure Storage logo has been used and applied, has also been rather mind-blowing.
It's almost starting to become a little unreal just because when I designed it, Pure Storage were a complete unknown, so I had no idea what was to become of them further down the line.
Here are a few other photographs of the Pure Storage logo in use:
Subscribe to the Blog with or | Post Updated: September 14th, 2016 | 1st Posted: December 11, 2015
Posted by: Graham Smith in Categories: Brand Identity, Designer Spotlight, Famous Logos
Western Brand Logo Translated to Chinese by Mehmet Gozetlik
Earlier today I tweeted a lovely rendition of the NASA logo translated into Chinese, and was completely in awe of how beautiful it looked compared to the original.
— Graham 'Logo' Smith (@thelogosmith) December 11, 2015
It was obvious I wasn't the only graphic designer to be so taken aback by this Chinese translation of the NASA logo, as it got retweeted, and liked, a number of times.
After a big of digging around, Twitter user: Mike Meulstress (@artisticdork), sent me a tweet informing me of the website that showcases the original project: Chinatown, by Mehmet Gozetlik.
It subsequently turns out this NASA logo isn't the only one of it's type; Mehmet Gozetlik has taken 20 of the most well-know western brand logos, including: Pepsi, Starbucks (this is just mindblowingly beautiful), Shell, London Underground, NASA etc, and masterfully translated them into Chinese, in a project called: Chinatown.
As far as brand projects go, Chinatown is right up there with the best, and probably a winner by a fair margin, in my humblest of opinions.
As a designer, I'm particularly impressed by the neon sign adaptions of the Pepsi logo, these look so stunning.
Thrilled to see the London Underground logo in here as well.
Chinatown Chinatown is a Chinese translation of the trademarks in a graphical way. It’s a carefully arranged series of artworks showcasing 20 well-known western brand logos with maintained visual and narrative continuity.
‘Chinatown’ pushes viewers to ask themselves what it means to see, hear, and become fully aware. ‘Chinatown’ also demonstrates our strangeness to 1.35 billion people in the world, when you can’t read Chinese.
A Taster of Chinatown, by Mehmet Gozetlik
Here's a little selection of the logos, and I'd strongly recommended visiting Mehmet's website to view the others, as well as watching the video.
Subscribe to the Blog with or | Post Updated: September 14th, 2016 | 1st Posted: December 3, 2015
Posted by: Graham Smith in Categories: Brand Identity, Design Essentials, Resources
BrandColors: Official color codes for the world's biggest brands
BrandColors looks pretty, but it actually serves quite a useful and interesting purpose for any collecting color codes by curious graphic designer.
BrandColors boasts an impressive directory of major brands whilst referencing their distinctive brand colours as a tabbed colour swatch.
But that's not all.
You can add as many brands as you like to a 'Collection', which you can then export out said brand colours to various file formats, including: ASE (Adobe Swatch Exchange), CSS, Sass, LESS and finally, Stylus.
This makes using these referenced colour swatches a real breeze.
As an example, I 'collected' the color swatches of About.me and Adobe, then exported them to CSS and ASE. you can see the CSS format below opened up in Coda, and the ASE file was imported into a new swatch collection in Photoshop, also below.